5 million euro prize fund to stay in 2011
Superleague Formula by Sonangol will continue to boast one of the biggest prize funds in world motorsport next season having handed out an incredible EURO 5,110,000 during a fascinating 2010 campaign.
Drivers will again battle for EURO 280,000 at each of the series' 12 events in 2011 with EURO 100,000 up-for-grabs for the winner of the five-lap dash-for-cash Super Final in which the weekend's top six drivers all earn prize money.
A further EURO 1,750,000 will again lie in wait for the top three drivers in the final league table, the champion taking home EURO 1,000,000, runner-up netting EURO 500,000 and third placed driver bagging a healthy EURO 250,000 cheque.
The continued prize fund reinforces Superleague Formula's position as one of the only championships in world motorsport where drivers can earn prize money based solely on their on-track performance.
In 2010 champion Davide Rigon (RSC Anderlecht) topped the earnings table, the Italian supplementing his EURO 1,000,000 prize for winning the title with a further EURO 680,000 thanks to three victories and six other appearances in Super Finals.
Craig Dolby (Tottenham Hotspur) was next up, his cash pot reaching a massive EURO 860,000 after finishing second in the final standings, while third place Max Wissel (FC Basel) won a cool EURO 575,000 after adding his end-of-season prize to money to that earned in nine Super Final outings.
Of those not to finish in the top three overall, John Martin (Beijing Guoan) won the most cash from Super Final appearances alone. The Australian driver, who was out of title contention early on but then drove brilliantly in the second half of the season, won two Super Finals and collected a total prize fund of EURO 365,000, just EURO 30,000 more than Yelmer Buurman (AC Milan) whose season started well but ended with a string of bad luck.
Two young New Zealanders also cashed-in despite neither of them completing a full season.
Chris van der Drift (Olympiacos) had already amassed EURO 325,000 of prize money in his rookie year before his massive accident at Brands Hatch, while Earl Bamber stepped from the commentary box to the race seat in China to win EURO 200,000 in just seven days driving for FC Porto and PSV Eindhoven.
The other two drivers to see their prize funds reach six figures also didn't take part in the full season and could threaten to top the list if they return in 2011.
Frederic Vervisch (Liverpool) made an immediate impression on debut in Adria and the Belgian racer ended the year with EURO 160,000 banked, helped in no small part by a brilliant Super Final win on old tyres in Portimao.
Frenchman Franck Perera started the season with Brazilian club Flamengo but also represented Lyon and Bordeaux on his way to EURO 125,000.
In total, 19 drivers shared the prize money in 2010.
Robin Webb, Competitions Director, Superleague Formula: "These days it's becoming increasingly difficult for talented drivers to earn money racing in single-seaters - but Superleague Formula now gives them that opportunity. Our cars are all equal so each driver wins money based solely on their own performances and the hard work they put in with their teams. We attracted some of the best professional racing drivers in the world this year and with the prize fund maintained for next season, we're expecting our best-ever grid in 2011."